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Sam Bankman-Fried's Mom: "The Philosophy of Personal Responsibility Has Ruined Criminal Justice and Economic Policy. It’s Time to Move Past Blame."
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From the Boston Review in 2013:

Beyond Blame

The philosophy of personal responsibility has ruined criminal justice and economic policy. It’s time to move past blame.

Barbara H. Fried

Barbara H. Fried, William W. and Gertrude H. Saunders Professor of Law at Stanford Law School, is author of The Progressive Assault on Laissez Faire: Robert Hale and the First Law and Economics Movement. She is also a member of the board of the McCoy Family Center for Ethics in Society at Stanford University.

June 28, 2013

In an article published shortly before his death, the political scientist James Q. Wilson took on the large question of free will and moral responsibility:

Does the fact that biology determines more of our thinking and conduct than we had previously imagined undermine the notion of free will? And does this possibility in turn undermine, if not entirely destroy, our ability to hold people accountable for their actions?

Wilson’s answer was an unequivocal no.

He has lots of company, which should come as a surprise given what scientific research into the determinants of human behavior has told us over the past four decades. Most of that research, as Wilson says, points to the same conclusion: our worldviews, aspirations, temperaments, conduct, and achievements—everything we conventionally think of as “us”—are in significant part determined by accidents of biology and circumstance. The study of the brain is in its infancy; as it advances, the evidence for determinism will surely grow.

One might have expected those developments to temper enthusiasm for blame mongering. Instead, the same four decades have been boom years for blame.

Retributive penal policy, which has produced incarceration rates of unprecedented proportions in the United States, has been at the forefront of the boom. But enthusiasm for blame is not confined to punishment. Changes in public policy more broadly—the slow dismantling of the social safety net, the push to privatize social security, the deregulation of banking, the health care wars, the refusal to bail out homeowners in the wake of the 2008 housing meltdown—have all been fueled by our collective sense that if things go badly for you, you’ve got no one to blame but yourself. Mortgage under water? You should have thought harder about whether you could really afford that house before you bought it. Trouble paying back your college loans? You should have looked more carefully at job prospects for sociology majors before you took out the loans. Unless of course “you” are “me,” in which case the situation tends to look a bit more complicated. …

Why exactly are we trying so hard to make the world safe for blame? What have we gained and what have we lost in the effort? And is there an alternative?

The treatment of blame in moral and political philosophy closely tracks cultural and political sensibilities on the subject, and as a result will go far in answering these questions.

In the philosophical literature, arguments in praise of blame divide into two categories, distinguished according to whether free will is regarded as compatible with determinism. Compatibilists—as the name suggests—think the answer is yes: provided certain minimal conditions of voluntariness are met (you must not have been physically coerced into acting as you did, you must have the mental capacity to comprehend your actions, etc.), your actions are freely chosen, notwithstanding that they are predetermined. Incompatibilists think the answer is no: if a person’s actions are determined by antecedent conditions, such actions are not freely chosen.

Some incompatibilists, concluding that our actions are in fact predetermined, are reluctant to assign personal responsibility and blame. I will return to these “skeptical incompatibilists” later on. The category I want to focus on now are libertarian incompatibilists. Like skeptical incompatibilists, they believe that free will is incompatible with determinism. But they are libertarian incompatibilists because they reject determinism in favor of the view that we freely choose our actions. And, having stipulated that we are blameworthy if and only if we freely choose our actions, they conclude that we are blameworthy.

But what is the requisite sense of free will—of our actions not being determined by antecedent conditions—that makes someone blameworthy? And do we in fact have free will in that sense?

Recent decades have been boom years for blame—our collective sense that if things go badly for you, it’s all your fault.

For the metaphysician, the theoretical possibility that one could have acted otherwise in some alternative world may suffice to establish free will. But if the question is whether we should hold a real-life Smith blameworthy in this world, one would think that the requisite sort of free will is not metaphysical but practical: When all is said and done, how plausible is it to think that Smith could have acted differently?

To take an all too frequent scenario, suppose that Smith grew up in a neighborhood where drug dealing was the most common form of gainful employment. He was raised by a single mother who was a cocaine addict, and by the time he was twelve was supporting his family by selling drugs. When he was seventeen, he got caught up in a drug deal gone bad, and in the altercation that ensued, he shot and killed the buyer.

How should we think about Smith’s level of moral responsibility? Is there some magical moment at which Smith was transformed from the victim of his circumstances to the author of his own story? If so, when was it? What can we realistically expect of someone who finds himself in Smith’s circumstances with Smith’s history and biological endowments? And what is to be gained—and what lost—by adopting social policies that expect more? Given the high stakes of public blame these days, one might hope that libertarian incompatibilists would take these questions seriously. …

A morally serious inquiry into the requisite meaning of free will needs to face some basic facts about this society—for starters, that in the United States parental income and education are the most powerful predictors of whether a three-year-old will end up in the boardroom or in prison; that most abusive parents were themselves victims of abuse and neglect; that the norms of one’s peer group when growing up are powerful determinants of behavior; and that traits of emotional reactivity and impulsiveness, which have a large genetic component, are among the more robust predictors of criminal behavior. Such an inquiry would also need to address what evidence would suffice to conclude that Smith could have behaved differently. Is it enough that someone in a similar situation once pulled herself up by her own bootstraps? That the average person does? And how can we be sure that the situations are in fact similar in relevant ways?

Libertarian incompatibilism, in short, hangs profoundly consequential judgments on the insubstantial hook of an abstract possibility.

… If a schizophrenic can introduce evidence that he is not a full moral agent, why not someone in the grips of a major depression, or impulsive anger, or drug addiction? A teenager growing up in gang territory, whose physical safety and social inclusion depends on choosing sides?

… Of the more than 2 million Americans currently incarcerated, 15 percent show symptoms of psychosis (delusions, hallucinations, etc.); another 25 to 40 percent have serious non-psychotic mental disorders. And this does not even get to the severe deprivation most prisoners faced growing up. …

Public reactions to wrongdoing have been studied most extensively in the context of crime. Researchers have found that peoples’ evaluations of serious wrongfulness vary significantly across social conditions and individuals. Tellingly, the more information people have about the context of the crime, the person who committed it, and the circumstances he or she came from, the more nuanced are their views of moral responsibility. …

An hour listening to the average lifer in prison or the average at-risk teen talk about his or her circumstances, and most Americans would never view those groups in the same way again.

Richard Pryor talked to penitentiary inmates:

Unfortunately, most of us will never spend that hour.

… Which brings me to the second reason to reject the fatalistic claim that blame, as we currently practice it, is not going away. Change always seems impossible—until it doesn’t. After 40 years of policies that have relentlessly ratcheted up punishment, the direction has shifted slightly in the last few years. New York and Massachusetts repealed their mandatory minimum sentences for drug offenses. California repealed the most egregious elements of its three-strikes law.

… The final reason for cautious optimism is that we have gotten nothing from our 40-year blame fest except the guilty pleasure of reproaching others for acts that, but for the grace of God, or luck, or social or biological forces, we might well have committed ourselves.

Here’s a graph I just made up of homicide deaths by race (with Hispanics being allotted to the race they identify with) since 1968.

It would be useful if the data went back a few years earlier to before the great anti-blame crime wave of the liberal mid-1960s. But it’s pretty clear that society can bring down crime when we get angry at criminals and when we subscribe to Professor Bankman-Fried’s view of the blamelessness of criminals, we get more of them.

Our schools are broken, a new generation of kids has been lost, our prisons are crammed with petty offenders whose lives we have ruined in the name of a war on drugs that has been a total failure. And judging from the current mood of the country, the guilty pleasure of blaming others has not proved all that pleasurable.

I doubt there will be a groundswell of support any time soon for the view that others may not, after all, be to blame for the mess they (and we) are in. But the fact that we have gotten so little in return for our blame mongering at least opens up the possibility that people would be receptive to a new approach. The next time something goes terribly wrong, suppose that instead of immediately asking who is to blame, we were to ask: How can we fix this problem? Fixing problems is costly. But as we have learned from the past 40 years, so is not fixing them. In the long run, most of us stand to gain by changing the national attitude toward blame. Doing so won’t magically transform the world. But it will increase the odds of a better life for many, if not most, of us. That seems like a more-than-even trade for giving up a sense of self-righteousness that none of us has earned.

 
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  1. She wrote this in 2013, when the left was at peak, recycled, “Crime is way down so we should stop arresting people so much” idiocy.

  2. ‘…I doubt there will be a groundswell of support any time soon for the view that others may not, after all, be to blame for the mess they (and we) are in…’

    What’s interesting about this mentality is that the fountain of tears gets promptly turned off if the sufferers are white gentiles.

    I was reading reader comments at the New York Times on a review of Hillbilly Elegy. Now, The Times is pretty much ground zero for ‘the poor oppressed victims can’t be held responsible for responding to their deprivation and oppression in the only way they can. Of course they use drugs, commit crime, fail in school, etc, etc.’

    But the subject of Hillbilly Elegy is white social failure. All of a sudden, it was tough love. ‘This is these people’s own fault’, etc, etc.

    Go figure.

    • Agree: AndrewR
    • Thanks: Anonymous Jew, David In TN
    • Replies: @Prester John
  3. Wilkey says:

    OT: The Atlantic takes a potshot at Great Britain, simultaneously blasting its supposed aversion to immigrants and the EU while criticizing it for problems exacerbated by….immigrants and the EU. Great discussion piece.

    • Thanks: J.Ross, anonymouseperson
  4. Renard says:

    Jews standing over Americas carcass:

    “Let’s not argue about who killed who..”

  5. Wilkey says:

    … Of the more than 2 million Americans currently incarcerated, 15 percent show symptoms of psychosis (delusions, hallucinations, etc.); another 25 to 40 percent have serious non-psychotic mental disorders

    These sound like…exactly the kind of people you would want locked up – either in prison or in a mental institution.

    • Thanks: SiNCERITY.net
  6. The fall in Black homicides corresponds to the Clinton crime bill which authorized the federal government to spend billions of dollars to help cities hire 100,000 police officers in addition to spending money to hire more prosecutors and tougher sentencing for criminals…The Clintons often boasted about their success in lowering crime by funding the police and incarcerating a record number of criminals.

    But we don’t incarcerate criminals because we blame them for their stupidity or violence, we do it to protect ourselves from criminals. For the same reason we can lock up crazy people without blaming them for being crazy, we do it to protect ourselves.

    • Agree: Ben tillman
  7. Renard says:

    Does this mean that they’ll stop blaming Trump voters?

    Will white political prisoners be released?

    Changes in public policy more broadly—the slow dismantling of the social safety net,

    Oh yeah. I remember when that happened.

    the push to privatize social security,

    Right! It’s private now!

    the deregulation of banking, the health care wars, the refusal to bail out homeowners in the wake of the 2008 housing meltdown

    Banks aren’t regulated any more? Who won the “health care wars” again? And did she forget over $100 billion in writedowns and bailouts for mortgage deadbeats?

    • Agree: Ben tillman, Inverness
  8. Barnard says:

    What would their moral argument be against the lower classes liquiditating them? They don’t believe in crime or punishment. It would have to be “we are the only ones smart enough to run society, you would be lost without us.”

    • Replies: @J.Ross
  9. Fried and her kin are waging a religious/ethnic war against gentile whites, and Steve fights back with a chart.

    That’ll show them.

    You really have no clue what’s going on, do you?

  10. Barbara H. Fried, William W. and Gertrude H. Saunders Professor of Law at Stanford Law School

    What is the policy– her policy– for those caught cheating on tests at Stanford Law?

    …is author of The Progressive Assault on Laissez Faire: Robert Hale and the First Law and Economics Movement.

    The progressives were totally into blame. Just different targets.

    A recent post on SLS’s site:

    Police Facebook Posts Disproportionately Highlight Crimes Involving Black Suspects, Study Finds

    Perhaps blacks just make for more interesting suspects? Like that guy in Quinzee, Mass who raped a 64-year-old Chinese woman just off a train because he couldn’t get a date.

    • Replies: @Brutusale
  11. Dmon says:

    “She is also a member of the board of the McCoy Family Center for Ethics in Society at Stanford University.”

    She and her kid could profit from being subjected to a little McCoy Family-style Ethics.

    • Agree: Captain Tripps
  12. “The next time something goes terribly wrong, suppose that instead of immediately asking who is to blame, we were to ask: How can we fix this problem? Fixing problems is costly. But as we have learned from the past 40 years, so is not fixing them. In the long run, most of us stand to gain by changing the national attitude toward blame.”

    Interesting topic especially coupled with a colossal failure in parenting. I also generally agree with avoiding overmuch blame and shame in shaping behavior while focusing on getting better results next time wrt mistakes. What Prof. Bankman-Fried left out was the communication of standards and values to begin with. (Btw, Have you ever noticed how people’s last names often create self-fullfilling prophecies? Madoff? Bankman Fried?). Certainly our elite are too relativistic to be trusted with the next generation but going back to the days of scarlet letters marking you as a sinner/criminal for all the rest of your days isn’t a better strategy. Prof. BANKMAN FRIED also has a point about the good reputations of the respectable middle class largely being undeserved. Most simply blend with their peers rather than embrace virtue. The only choice is to conform which is largely determined by biology. Of course Jr wasn’t successfully transitioned into a careful enough, responsible enough adult because neither mom nor dad held him to high enough standards (we assume but maybe the opposite is true and he rebelled).

    Important for consideration would be cultural relativism both normal populations and underclasses. Likely, Prof. Bankman-Fried was thinking in terms of an underclass that doesn’t know what is acceptable or hasn’t been provided with good role models for doing things the right way. I’d also say there has to be some balance between labelling people as criminals early in life and indulging bad behavior. There should be more benefit to being moral and law abiding than not though I’m not certain how to do this. Also true is that our intellectual classes (who educate our young adults) tend to believe conventional morality is declasse. Perhaps I have stumbled upon something there… Nevertheless, I believe a healthy society does well enough by its youth that a huge percentage of them don’t end up in jail.

    • Replies: @HammerJack
  13. J.Ross says:

    “our schools are broken”

    BECAUSE OF PEOPLE LIKE YOU, PROFESSOR FRIED. Not all our schools are broken. The ones run correctly have waiting lists to get in. The ones controlled by teacher’s unions and subject to medically fraudulent lockdowns are the ones that are broken. Just like how our most messed up cities have unbroken decades of consistent Democrat machine rule. I screwed up your kitchen, therefore you must now give up your freedom.
    You cannot make a stereotypical anti-Semitic joke worse than the genuine statements and actions of the Bankman, Fried, and Bankman-Fried gang. But their names together do sound like a scammy law office.

    • Agree: Redneck farmer
  14. J.Ross says:
    @Barnard

    They’re literally Bolsheviki. The “argument” would be to liquidate non-moronic workers first.

  15. Anon[327] • Disclaimer says:
    @Ghost of Bull Moose

    The (((Left))) hit it’s zenith in 2018-2022. Weinstein. Epstein. Ukraine. Ten years of destroying the US economy. Rampant crime.

    Even Chapelle and Ye noticed. Yet, Steve did not.

    • Agree: Richard B, J.Ross
    • Replies: @Richard B
    , @LP5
  16. SafeNow says:

    The best way to decide where the blame lies (and how much) for Smith having gone astray is to look at the twin studies; identical twins separated at birth and reared by different parents, biological versus adoptive, in different environments. The Denmark study, involving a large data set, is probably the best, although all of them were in basic agreement with one another. The Denmark study concluded:

    “If neither the biological nor adoptive parents were convicted, 13.5 percent of the sons were convicted. If the adoptive parents were convicted and the biological parents were not, this figure only increased to 14.7 percent. When examining sons whose biological parents were convicted and adoptive parents remained law-abiding, however, 20 percent of the adoptees had one or more criminal convictions. Moreover, as the number of biological parental convictions increased, the rate of adoptees with court convictions increased.”

    • Thanks: HammerJack
  17. @Hernan Pizzaro del Blanco

    Hernan Pizzaro del Blanco wrote:

    But we don’t incarcerate criminals because we blame them for their stupidity or violence, we do it to protect ourselves from criminals. For the same reason we can lock up crazy people without blaming them for being crazy, we do it to protect ourselves.

    Of course, the paradox here is that if we are completely determined, then all the people who want to severely punish criminals cannot help the fact that they want to severely punish criminals.

    Liberal advocates of determinism do not actually take determinism seriously.

    My fellow physicist Sabine Hossenfelder addresses this issue of determinism in her recent book Existential Physics: A Scientist’s Guide to Life’s Biggest Questions . Sabine concludes that we are indeed determined (aside from irrelevant quantum effects), but that, as you say, that fact is no reason not to punish criminals.

    All this somehow reminds me of Bertrand Russell’s comment about solipsism:

    “As against solipsism it is to be said, in the first place, that it is psychologically impossible to believe, and is rejected in fact even by those who mean to accept it. I once received a letter from an eminent logician, Mrs. Christine Ladd-Franklin, saying that she was a solipsist, and was surprised that there were no others. Coming from a logician and a solipsist, her surprise surprised me.”

  18. Smith? More like DeSmeeats.

  19. So, the prof supports sterilization of people like “Smith” who have an unfortunate genetic inheritance?

  20. Mr. Anon says:

    Most of that research, as Wilson says, points to the same conclusion: our worldviews, aspirations, temperaments, conduct, and achievements—everything we conventionally think of as “us”—are in significant part determined by accidents of biology and circumstance.

    Anyone who uses the term “accident of birth” or “accident of biology” doesn’t understand biology. Yes, there is some variability in genetic inheritance. But in the main, there is nothing “accidental” about who your parents are relative to you. You are their progeny. That is no accident.

    • Agree: Right_On
  21. David M says:

    If she is really a determinist, what’s the point of writing an article to convince others to be determinists as well? It’s not like they have a choice in the matter.

    I guess then she also didn’t have a choice whether to write it or not.

  22. Mark G. says:

    I’ve observed numerous cases in my life of siblings growing up together where one turns to a life of drugs or crime and the other doesn’t. I’ve seen people from poor backgrounds become successful and people from wealthy backgrounds fail. Sometimes inheriting a lot of wealth can be a curse instead of a blessing. Unearned wealth can lead to decadence, both at the individual level and the societal level. Giving people wealth they haven’t earned has a corrupting effect. Did being the son of a rich and powerful politician help or hurt Hunter Biden?

    • Agree: beavertales
    • Replies: @AndrewR
    , @res
  23. Altai says:

    The sad part is she is right. Steve doesn’t see the connection between ‘personal responsibility’ and what such language is really used for ‘individualism’ which is really code for ‘you have personal responsibility but no social responsibility or obligations to others’.

    We see this in business where the line “lol, it’s a business they need to make profit” espouses to justify every kind of anti-social business practice as we see in a street thug in his activities.

    What we have seen in the US then throughout the Anglosphere and then through the West is the advance of individualism (For the ethnic cores of these countries) and the failure of the collective immune system and society being able to advance it’s interests.

    That’s really what ‘personal responsibility’ has really meant over the last 40 years. Not autonomous individuals working to be their own enforcer of their own pro-social actions outside maybe the most facile dimensions. It has meant that people don’t really feel a strong sense of responsibility for others or any kind of collective at all. And for those on the Cluster B spectrum it has meant free reign.

    The grinding sound in Western democracies is a desire for social and economic collectivism after the social and economic pollution and sickness that has been building for 40 years. But since we have decided that social individualism (Social liberalism) and economic individualism (Neoliberalism, Reganism, Thatcherism, the third way, whatever you want to call it) are always to be essential ethoses for mainstream left and right wing parties, the needed bringing them together has been difficult. The reigning attitude of the upper middle classes has been to betray the working class one way or another.

    When ‘personality responsibility’ reigns the group immune system is suppressed the parasites of society come out and do their damage. She is right and her son and his actions are a great example of somebody who only cares about becoming rich and not about how his actions impact others. Indeed it looks like this is the operative way the ‘Fourth Turning’ process works.

    • Replies: @Captain Tripps
  24. @David M

    I guess then she also didn’t have a choice whether to write it or not.

    Right, and Steve Sailer didn’t have a choice whether to subject his readers to the rantings of Sam Bankman-Fried’s Mom, and it was pre-determined that I was going to [LIKE] this comment. Thanks, David.

  25. Changes in public policy more broadly—the slow dismantling of the social safety net, the push to privatize social security, the deregulation of banking, the health care wars, the refusal to bail out homeowners in the wake of the 2008 housing meltdown …

    As Renard pointed out, all this dismantling, pushing, and deregulating didn’t happen. Homeowners (some that I know) did get bailed out indirectly when they walked away from their loan commitments as the too-big-to-fail banks were bailed out. Oh, and her side WON the health care wars.

    —have all been fueled by our collective sense that if things go badly for you, you’ve got no one to blame but yourself. Mortgage under water? You should have thought harder about whether you could really afford that house before you bought it. Trouble paying back your college loans? You should have looked more carefully at job prospects for sociology majors before you took out the loans. Unless of course “you” are “me,” in which case the situation tends to look a bit more complicated. …

    Thankfully, most Americans are still not Barbara Fried, mother of a big-time scam artist. Everything you wrote there, Barbara, was right. I thought you were quoting Ron Paul for a second. You SHOULD have thought harder before… Bail these people out such as with school loan forgiveness, and you (not me) create a moral hazard that further increases the advantages of irresponsibility.

    It’s not complicated. As a matter of fact, I DID get 2 months behind on my mortgage one time well before the ’07 period, due very specifically to GOVERNMENT slowing down the start of my business, and the banks were not screwing around back then. I had to come up with 2 payments by mid-month. I’d had such a bad period financially, that my car hadn’t had the gas gauge above the “E” line in a year, but I took responsibility. I didn’t sit on my ass writing stupid papers to excuse myself or pre-excuse my son.

    “Don’t blame little Sammy! He was raised this way … wait… by his Dad! That’s it. He didn’t approve when Sammy started wearing dresses around the house. Blame my ex!”

  26. @Unintended Consequence

    Have you ever noticed how people’s last names often create self-fullfilling prophecies? Madoff? Bankman Fried?

    This lady is now on the U.S. quarter and she’d like a word with you, in private.

  27. LondonBob says:

    Are Sabbatean Frankists still a thing?

  28. @PhysicistDave

    Good point.
    If there is no free will we should lock-up all criminals for life, since they cannot be reformed and are unable to be upstanding law abiding citizens. Although I suspect castrating rapists would deter them from being rapists. So there are some actions we can take to alter criminal behaviors.

  29. Richard B says:
    @Ghost of Bull Moose

    She wrote this in 2013, when the left was at peak, recycled, “Crime is way down so we should stop arresting people so much” idiocy.

    Exactly! And speaking of idiocy, though she does make a valid point or two, it’s hard to take her scribbling on blame seriously when she comes from a tribe that blames whites for just about everything, while using that blame to get said tribe placed above criticism.

    She even violates her own logic by indulging in a bit of boomeranging, or blaming the blamer, ie; noticer. Of course, in the article it’s more implied than stated. Because if it was stated the dunce cap she put on her head before writing the article would be even easier to see than it already is.

    Perhaps a better word than idiocy would be imbecility, as in moral imbecility.

    • Replies: @Nicholas Stix
    , @Anon
  30. She evidently doesn’t get that her faux-determinism argument goes against what she wants to promote.

    If a person has no personal responsibility (or “free will”, in older terminology), then they have to be treated like animals. We agree that snakes, hyenas & other similar creatures do not possess free will to decide & change the course of their actions. They’re what nature made of them.

    If criminals are like animals- then they should not be punished, in the sense that punishment could somehow “improve” them & change them for the better. They should be eliminated from a society where they cause damage & spread destruction.

    Society does this with predatory animals- liquidate them, put them into zoo or eliminate them in some other manner.

    Actually, her argument may go against punishment, but it logically results in something more extreme- complete annihilation of criminals because they can’t be anything but carcinogenic to the society.

  31. Richard B says:
    @Anon

    Yet, Steve did not.

    Could not, or would not. Either way, yeah, he didn’t.

    Though I have to say, that I have noticed that he’s not deleting comments such as yours, and not just yours. That’s why I’m seeing more and more of them than every before. Even though they were certainly being written, and not just by me.

  32. Jon says:

    Parental income and education are the best predictors of whether a three-year-old will end up in the boardroom or in prison.

    And then Sam said: “Mom, why not both?” And here we are.

    • LOL: Hibernian
  33. Alden says:

    I think Barbara Fried is a Calvinist. No free will, no choice everything is determined. Calvinists thought everything was determined by God. Fried thinks black actions are determined by systemic racism and the social security administration.

    And she’s a teacher at a top 5 law school.

  34. Why exactly are we trying so hard to make the world safe for blame?

    Because we have no free will and are just predetermined by fate to blame others. Duh. Doesn’t this lady understand her own philosophy? You can’t blame the blamers for blaming. Blamers just gotta blame.

    • LOL: J.Ross
    • Replies: @Kim
  35. Brutusale says:
    @Reg Cæsar

    Congrats on the native pronunciation of KWIN-zee!

    • Replies: @Reg Cæsar
  36. Kim says:
    @Hypnotoad666

    I have noticed that a lot of people that I have been told are really smart are in fact really dumb.

  37. Rebunga says:

    My idea of fixing the problem is probably a little different from hers. . . .

  38. @Altai

    I disagree. Let’s not throw the personal responsibility philosophical framework baby out with the current hedonistic/nihilistic bathwater.

    What you’re describing is the atomization of the individual in Western culture. Personal responsibility has been de-coupled from its twin, the individual Christian moral framework. It is this dual sense that governed Christian European civilization for 1500 years (it took some time to gel) from its pagan barbarian roots. Last Real Calvinist and other more learned commenters can amplify/correct me; our civilization emphasized the personal salvation with Christ and God, anchored on a pre-Christian understanding from our Jewish cousins of individual moral conduct; God gave Moses his Ten Commandments as a foundational set of personal, individual rules to live a moral and just life. Christ added to this his teachings to use love of your fellow man as your touchstone to live a moral life. Subsequently distilled by the Disciples and early church fathers into such frameworks for individual conduct as observing the Seven Cardinal Virtues and avoiding the Seven Deadly sins. We are all personally responsible for doing that; and from that our social conduct amongst and between each other follows and extends.

    That’s how you can found a nation of explorers, pioneers, settlers, farmers and tradesmen who could do business with each other as fellow Christian brothers, or, extend the hand of Christian fellowship and good will to the non-Christians among us (we had much good interaction with Natives as well as the violent bad parts; we are all sinners after all…), otherwise other religions would not have been welcome here (Jewish pioneers, settlers, farmers and businessmen were here from the get-go as well).

    I’m not naïve to think it was always that way; of course amongst the colonial Americans there were ruthless sociopaths who would look to take advantage of others; they are always among us. But the difference is, in the past they would called out, punished either officially (through the law) or unofficially (social ostracism) in due time.

    In Current year America, it seems as if this is all inverted, and you get Sam Bankman-Fried, hustling a fake form of “altruism” simply as a cynical ploy to the gullible. And, his mother attempting to square an immoral circle by questioning the “philosophy” of personal responsibility. There is such a thing as “Thinking to Hard” about a subject, or, “Being Too Clever by Half”, and those are the most tame descriptors I am thinking of.

    • Agree: Mark G.
  39. One can go on and on with this subject but to what end? Reading Fried’s essay reminded me of the late (and ineffectual) NYC mayor, David Dinkins, who, within some circles, acquired the nickname “Root Cause” as he was forever given to shrugging at complaints that NYC was awash in crime with the excuse that a mayor can’t solve “the root cause” of crime.

    Dinkins did nothing.

    Then along came Rudy Giuliani. No, Giuliani didn’t solve the “root cause”. But he DID do something–and the NYC crime rate declined appreciably.

    Fried’s argument dates back at least to Rousseau, but the much larger issue of free will v. determinism is one that has been rattling back and forth and forth for a thousand years before The Enlightenment and still is not resolved–if in fact it ever can be.

    Nice try though, Babs.

  40. What a gift these people are!
    Such incisive analysis of the human condition!
    Such enhancement to productivity!
    Such an immense contribution to America in just two generations of one family!

    And yet we deplorables have continued to feed these people … goyishe kopf is right.

  41. @Colin Wright

    ” This is these people’s own fault’, etc, etc.’ ”

    Because, after all, they’re white.

    Which would imply that blacks are in essence trapped in a state of permanent childhood.

    • Replies: @Colin Wright
  42. jz- says:

    She addresses blame but not public safety.

  43. View post on imgur.com


    don’t worry. we’re getting the band back together. the gang’s all here.

    • Replies: @Anonymous Jew
  44. It would be useful if the data went back a few years earlier to before the great anti-blame crime wave of the liberal mid-1960s. But it’s pretty clear that society can bring down crime when we get angry at criminals and when we subscribe to Professor Bankman-Fried’s view of the blamelessness of criminals, we get more of them.

    I really don’t understand the point of Universities if it is the province of well-compensated professors to engage in what must be intentionally obtuse theorizing for the purpose of making society worse – and in this case more dangerous. You really have to be very smart to miss the mark by this much – yet more data for the Charlton “Clever Sillies” hypothesis. Any dummy can say “put the bad man in jail and throw away the key!” It takes a real high octane Hebrew brain to figure that the bad man is really, secretly the victim here. Perhaps the World would be better served if the Bankman-Frieds were still stuck debating how to deftly outsmart the omniscient author of the Universe in order to skirt his clear dietary and labor injunctions.

    In any event, if some fraction of the population through genetics and not having a perfectly nurturing childhood become conscienceless killbots beginning in adolescence, isn’t this an argument in favor of simply identifying them early and segregating them away from everybody else before they can harm innocents*? If they’re morally indistinguishable from tigers, why wouldn’t we treat them like tigers – and we don’t let tigers roam freely in U.S. cities or take the subway, do we? We keep them far away from civil society or in secure cages. Nobody thinks “well, the tiger can’t help himself, therefore he must be permitted to consume any children he encounters.”

    * I think one of the unstated motivations of people like this and those who carry these ideas to their practical conclusion like “reform” DAs (i.e. Krasner) is that the society is to blame for creating these monsters, so society is morally obligated to be exposed to the violence that they cause. It’s a crime if the society can permit the kind of neglect that contributes to their creation and then simply absolve itself by blaming them and locking them up. The “reform” DA inverts the role of the prosecutor and the law – he indicts the society, not the criminal. The society is incarnate in the person murdered or other law abiding citizens at risk, while the murderer is the victim of the society who produced him. It certainly doesn’t help that a strong narrative in the culture is that blacks are particularly and unjustly oppressed, and therefore black criminals are the least responsible for their crimes.

  45. @PhysicistDave

    Of course, the paradox here is that if we are completely determined, then all the people who want to severely punish criminals cannot help the fact that they want to severely punish criminals.

    I suppose part of being a clever silly Stanford Professor is pretending not to experience or understand human emotions and motivations.

    But one very good reason that we have the State punish people who break the law to harm others is so that the State’s monopoly on violence is seen as both legitimate and credible. It’s probably very important for the primate brain to see the wrongdoer punished in a manner at least arguably proportionate to his crime.

    If people begin to think that criminals will not be adequately punished, people will extract the punishment themselves and it will tend not to be measured and proportionate.

    Many forget that the lex talionis was a rule of moderation – you could only put out an eye to avenge the loss of an eye. You couldn’t kill the eye-poker-outer’s whole family, burn his house, and steal all of his livestock to avenge the loss of an eye.

    • Agree: J.Ross
  46. B36 says:

    You can’t deal with something called crypto (ie, secret, hidden) and expect there’ll be real public audited financials.

    • Replies: @J.Ross
  47. LP5 says:
    @Anon

    Anon[327] writes:

    The (((Left))) hit it’s zenith in 2018-2022. Weinstein. Epstein. Ukraine. Ten years of destroying the US economy. Rampant crime.

    Visualize the spikes around election years. Those don’t just happen by accident. Summers of discontent seem to be over-represented on a four yearish cycle.

  48. AndrewR says:
    @Mark G.

    Hunter seems to be quite an outlier. Most of the children of the rich and powerful turn out much better than him, although not necessarily attaining the heights of their parents.

  49. @Wilkey

    These sound like…exactly the kind of people you would want locked up – either in prison or in a mental institution.

    You omitted my preference. A crypt.

  50. ” if a person’s actions are determined by antecedent conditions, such actions are not freely chosen.”

    And what if a person’s actions are as much determined by his ultimate intentions as by his antecedent conditions? What if he wants to be a Big Man in the neighborhood–and wants that with all of his being? Is she and her measly social worker mentality going to be strong enough to dam and rechannel an aggressive, testosterone-fueled black adolescent who is striving to fulfill what he regards as his just destiny? Fat chance. Here we run into the “enlightened woman social worker as reformative influence in the life of an unfortunate” fallacy. She is no match for him and he will bend her over a rail and rape her before he will heel to her blandishments. Doing so is part of his Big Plan and reaffirms his feeling of power over her meddling type. It is his triumph over the very conditions that, she believes, limits him.

    She has forgotten that society has a right to protect itself from predation. Let’s agree that a black drug dealing kid has little freedom to expand beyond his horizons and murders a counterpart to one of his deals. All this is predictable. But she draws the wrong conclusions. For her, she holds the lawbreaker blameless, the victim of circumstances. But that’s not the main event. With this same knowledge in hand, society take steps to protect its citizens by locking the perpetrator away for years precisely because he is most likely to be a future threat.

  51. Does she blame Hitler?

  52. It’s comforting to know that if I slapped Barbara H Fried hard round the face, neither of us would blame me for doing so.

    • Thanks: Thrallman
  53. Doesn’t this all imply her son, who has been given everything and committed a massive crime harming many people, is extra culpable and therefore deserving of extra punishment?

  54. Curle says:

    “Tellingly, the more information people have about the context of the crime, the person who committed it, and the circumstances he or she came from, the more nuanced are their views of moral responsibility. …”

    How about information regarding the effectiveness (high) of giving habitual criminals long sentences? How do people respond to that information?

  55. Yeah. Talk about “self righteousness.”

    Seriously, I agree that “free will” is mostly a myth. But if a society is going to have positive laws rather than unconscious mores that everyone instinctively follows, then you have to presume “free will,” experts agree.

    Of course, in primitive societies, anyone that doesn’t follow the unconscious understanding of good and evil is obviously a demon or a witch.

    Or an ultra-MAGA armed insurrectionist.

  56. @Wilkey

    … Of the more than 2 million Americans currently incarcerated, 15 percent show symptoms of psychosis (delusions, hallucinations, etc.); another 25 to 40 percent have serious non-psychotic mental disorders

    These sound like…exactly the kind of people you would want locked up – either in prison or in a mental institution.

    With the advent of drugs than can often if not generally treat the really severe mental illnesses of bi-polar disorder and schizophrenia, institutionalization for all of them is not required to keep them under control.

    What’s required is that force is an option, to make them take their meds, or be sent back to a mental institution. Which means a coup complete or thereabouts change in governance because force was removed by judicial fiat in the 1960s-70s.

    Prisons end up being mental institutions by default because committing the vast majority of the mentally ill prior to their committing a serious crime is off the table. If they successfully use the insanity plea (TL;DR as I understand it: didn’t know what they were doing was wrong) they get sent to a mental institution for an indefinite stay.

    Or course the other thing that makes this coup compete is that we know today force would be used by the Left to institutionalize a great many of their enemies, as we saw to an extent in the Soviet Union.

    • Replies: @Art Deco
  57. @Citizen of a Silly Country

    Fried and her kin are waging a religious/ethnic war against gentile whites, and Steve fights back with a chart.

    It takes all types, a complete spectrum to fight what’s in turn been a century plus complete spectrum attack against gentile whites. Perhaps you’ve noted how we’re still fighting Boas’ blank slate which I presume he started pushing in 1899 when he became a professor of anthropology at Columbia University? And with a little help from his friends conquered by 1920-30?

    While Mr. Sailer’s prefers dialectic including ultimately eeeevil noticing, he’s not at all bad at rhetoric. He’s signed up for and effectively prosecutes his chosen battlefields in this war; demand he does more or differently is divisive, currently a general fatal flaw of the [fill in the blank] Right. It says a great deal about his character that he publishes attacks on himself like your’s and continues to fight the good fight.

    Anyone want to bet he’s overall more effective than the sum total of all us commentators to his blog? (That’s not counting other Unz.com authors including Mr. Unz himself.)

  58. @PhysicistDave

    I had heard the story as some lady explaining her “philosophy” to him at a party, and when he pointed out it was solipsistic, she responded “Well, isn’t everyone?”

    This is the deontological analogue to solipsism in epistemology.

    The tell with these people is always the refusal to extend their argument to themselves.

    I am a solipsist, and you must agree with me.

    You are wrong to blame the murderer of your child, but I have the right to demand that the law school deposit my paycheck in proper and timely fashion.

    It’s the old Talmudic “X for me, but not for thee.”

  59. @Brutusale

    You learn these things in the Coast Guard. Half the crew on my first unit was from New England, and within six months I could tell which state, often which half of which state, each hailed from.

  60. @Citizen of a Silly Country

    Steve does have a clue, and in the past he has indeed proceeded dangerously into ‘noticing’ territory with regard to Big Nose. But he is ultimately and above all else a numbers man, so charts are what we can expect from him. In any event, I’ve been a big fan of his since the 90s.

  61. odin says:

    But it’s pretty clear that society can bring down crime when we get angry at criminals and when we subscribe to Professor Bankman-Fried’s view of the blamelessness of criminals, we get more of them.

    There’s a golden mean between the professor and our host. Do not blame criminals. Just serenely lock them up and throw away the key. You may even choose to murmur “There but for the grace of God….”

    The streets would be safer. And we’d be free of the terrible “sense of self-righteousness that none of us has earned”.

  62. Art Deco says:
    @That Would Be Telling

    Schizophrenics and manic-depressives can be a trial for people compelled to look after them. They’re not all that criminal. Vagrants commit a great many nuisance crimes; that merits confinement. The problem with street crime is one of impetuous people and predatory people. (Who merit confinement as well, but in a different sort of milieu).

  63. Hilarious. She’s a philosophical amateur. There are quite simple rejoinders to her position. My remarks will echo some earlier comments.

    She says we can’t blame anyone because all actions are determined. But she morally blames those who favor the criminal and social policies she opposes. Doesn’t she understand that her opponents can’t help but act to construct such policies? And she implicitly holds readers epistemically blameworthy for disagreeing with her argument and policy recommendations. Because they are determined though, they can’t help but disagree with her. And why should they attend to her rebukes? Especially since they are able to respond that her arguments were blindly determined rather than a matter of considered choice.

    The murderer’s murder was completely determined, and thus he is not responsible. But that we raise a lynch mob and hang him is completely determined too, and hence we are not responsible for our actions. Just can’t help but wanting to punish criminals. The universe forced us to be that way.

    Compatiblism is a nice position. https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/compatibilism/ One version, simply put, is that humans observably are creatures who hold one another morally accountable for their actions. It’s impossible to conceive of a recognizably human world where expectations of accountability don’t occur (insert your favorite obvious joke to the contrary here). I like to say that however the metaphysical question of freewill vs. determinism is settled, we hold others accountable, and must do so – whether metaphysically we “freely” choose to do so or are wholly “determined” to do so.

  64. Anonymous[105] • Disclaimer says:

    Interesting op-ed by the Fraud Mom. “Libertarian incompatibilism” was a new one to me and encapsulates much of what I hate about aspie libertarians. Anything that humiliates libertarianism’s predominating dork contingent is a net good for the society.

  65. @David M

    f she is really a determinist, what’s the point of writing an article to convince others to be determinists as well? It’s not like they have a choice in the matter.

    Convincing them doesn’t require that they have a choice. One does not choose to be convinced. It occurs involuntarily.

  66. @PhysicistDave

    Of course, the paradox here is that if we are completely determined, then all the people who want to severely punish criminals cannot help the fact that they want to severely punish criminals.

    No, that’s not how determinism works. You’re not eternally identical in phenotype. You’re not born 5’ 11”, and you’re not born with permanent opinions. Things like opinions can change as one’s nature (so to speak) continues to interact with the Umwelt.

    • Replies: @PhysicistDave
  67. … Of the more than 2 million Americans currently incarcerated, 15 percent show symptoms of psychosis (delusions, hallucinations, etc.);

    A person can be very mentally ill and not meet the criteria for an insanity defense in most states. These people don’t belong in prison, and should be serving their sentences in secure mental health facilities, and it’s a national scandal that they’re not. But I still don’t want them walking around free.

  68. @Ghost of Bull Moose

    2013 was a great year, actually. Obama was president.

  69. @Anonymous

    Interesting op-ed by the Fraud Mom. “Libertarian incompatibilism” was a new one to me and encapsulates much of what I hate about aspie libertarians.

    I live in a state that’s currently undergoing severe Californication. These vile California bastards have imported their housing crisis right along with them, along with everything else odious about them. On the local news, there are frequently stories about long-time locals who are blind, crippled, elderly, SMI, etc., being thrown out of their homes of many years at the end of their leases with no place to go, not because of anything they did wrong, but simply because of market forces set in motion by the Californication of my state.

    Anyway, there’s some libertarian autist who hangs around on the youtube channels of the local news outlets making tone-deaf statements in response to these stories like “What makes people think they have the right to live in a housing market they can’t afford”? Housing is cheap in Oklahoma (or wherever) Why don’t they move?”

    These people are cut from the same cloth as the neoliberals that control both our major parties and pretty much the entire world. I would love to feed all their asses into a dull-bladed wood chipper.

    Speaking of aspie libertarians/neolibs, who could ever forget this ass?:

    https://isteve.blogspot.com/2013/10/tyler-cowen-90-of-americans-will-and.html

  70. Time to cancel Richard Pryor? Yeah, he’s dead, but…

    The next step I suppose is that the Woke disinter the bones of the deceased heretics to desecrate for the Thoughtcrimes.

  71. MEH 0910 says:
    @Ghost of Bull Moose

    Her sister Linda P. Fried wrote in 2014:

    https://www.huffpost.com/entry/putting-a-public-health-l_b_5434367

    Putting a Public Health Lens on Incarceration

    The United States is facing an epidemic of incarceration — people in jail or prisons — demanding national attention and a systemic response.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Linda_P._Fried

  72. @Ben tillman

    Ben tillman wrote to me:

    [Dave] Of course, the paradox here is that if we are completely determined, then all the people who want to severely punish criminals cannot help the fact that they want to severely punish criminals.

    [BT] No, that’s not how determinism works. You’re not eternally identical in phenotype. You’re not born 5’ 11”, and you’re not born with permanent opinions. Things like opinions can change as one’s nature (so to speak) continues to interact with the Umwelt.

    You are confusing narrow genetic determinism with determinism in general.

    After all, liberals, such as SBF’s mother, reject genetic determinism — they are not HBD advocates!

    Their argument is based on environmental determinism — i.e., that it is precisely your interaction with the “Umwelt” that determines your behavior.

    As I explained, I think their conclusion is logically inconsistent, but, after all, they do not care: it is a matter of proving their social allegiance, not a matter of logic.

    Oddly, genetic determinists tend to draw exactly the opposite conclusion from determinism than environmental determinists do.

    I’m an agnostic on the matter myself: I think we quite obviously do not know enough about human behavior specifically or the universe in general to know if determinism is true. I do not think even in physics that we can give a final answer to the question (in quantum mechanics, the official textbook story is indeterminist, but I and lots of physicists have our doubts).

    And I do not think it is relevant to morality or legal punishment in any case, as I explained.

  73. This whole discussion is off the rails because we have misconstrued the whole concept of the criminal justice system. We use language like “penal code” and “penalty” in the system, but the focus should not be on blaming and punishing the criminal. I would argue by far the most important part, should be protecting the law-abiding public. That’s a requirement for an ordered and prosperous society. Yes, it’s horrible that some are born into criminal lives, but the cycle cannot be broken by subjecting more people to crime. Criminals must be found, prosecuted, and kept off the streets, not to punish them, but to protect others. Then we can go about ending the cycle through education and economic opportunity.

    • Replies: @That Would Be Telling
  74. DamDoc says:

    He is a good boy, a very good boy

    • Replies: @J.Ross
  75. @Prester John

    ‘…Which would imply that blacks are in essence trapped in a state of permanent childhood.’

    Amusingly, that’s just about the take that your basic Nineteenth century mossback segregationist took: blacks are children.

    As a working model, it’s at least as realistic, humane, and practical as any. Assume your average black is a giant, sexually mature five year old, and you’ve got a perspective that should prove valid. Decide what would be an appropriate legal and societal response to such a population, and it may provide the greatest possible good for the greatest possible number.

    • Replies: @Art Deco
  76. Corvinus says:
    @Citizen of a Silly Country

    “Fried and her kin are waging a religious/ethnic war against gentile whites“

    False narrative.

  77. Kylie says:

    My simplistic take:

    Effing **** disingenuously elides “blame”and “responsibility” right out of the starting gate, then continues constructing an argument so shoddy and dishonest that it’s no surprise she birthed a criminally inclined sociopath.

    I wish the worst on them both.

  78. @Hernan Pizzaro del Blanco

    …we don’t incarcerate criminals because we blame them for their stupidity or violence, we do it to protect ourselves from criminals. For the same reason we can lock up crazy people without blaming them for being crazy, we do it to protect ourselves.

    We do a lot of stupid shit that is left in place from prior generations and centuries.

    Free will is one of about 3 things[1] about which I have changed my mind as an adult. Like most people I ‘intuitively’ felt like I was the conscious author of my own actions – that every decision I made was endogenous and that I was free to change my mind at any time.

    Turns out that this intuition was incorrect.

    Every decision we make is initiated by processes over which we cannot exercise conscious control. We can’t even influence the inputs to the sub-conscious part of our thought process – partly because we have no idea what the inputs even are, and partly because the subconscious will not permit us to do actions that it doesn’t ‘agree with’.

    The corollary: influences on the subconscious are necessarily exogenous.

    We cannot decide to do things to change our subconscious in the desired direction.

    We can’t even attempt to put ourselves in the path of events in such a way that our subconsious will be influenced in some desired direction.

    On that basis, at least part of the justification for incarceration of transgressors is that it serves as an external stimulus to their subconscious – as well as the obvious benefit of not having transgressors wandering around in public.

    If the ‘all thought starts in the subconscious‘ is correct – and I am convinced it is – the transgressor does not have moral culpability for transgressions.

    Moral culpability cannot exist in the absence of the freedom to decide otherwise – expressed in an old maxim that exculpates those acting under duress: actus me invito factus non est meus actus.

    This is quite separate from the idea that if an act imposes costs on others, then the person who does them – even by accident – must offset those costs.

    [1] By ‘things‘ I mean ‘ideas that I thought about at length‘. The others are:
     ▪️ the health risks of environmental cigarette smoke [they’re bogus], and
     ▪️ chronic fatigue syndrome [it’s real].

  79. I believe in personal responsibility, but sucks that overreaching government policy is typically what is responsible for the events that end up biting people in the rear.

  80. @Roland Rock

    We use language like “penal code” and “penalty” in the system, but the focus should not be on blaming and punishing the criminal.

    While you’re right the focus should be on protecting society, “Embrace the healing power of ‘and’.” If the people don’t feel criminals are getting punished, or sufficiently punished, well Glenn “Instapundit” Reynolds puts it well, police are there to protect criminals from the just wrath of the people. Which tends to get out of hand in various ways, including long running feuds.

    I think we’re also too soft and cheap, and now corrupt to implement the “Criminals must be found, prosecuted, and kept off the streets.” As I understand it, old time felonies were small in the number of types, and were punished by death or physical removal. We also used to impose physical and humiliation types of punishment like lashing and the stocks, which might work again for those who can be learn, can be trained.

    And of course none of this can work unless we properly address the issues of blacks, and I’d include other sub-100 IQ and dyscivic genes and/or culture sub-populations. The former is all but unimaginable when they’re being used a golems to destroy whites, and again.

    The death penality should also be off the table as long as our police-judical complex is so corrupt, and significantly controlled by an hostile elite which can’t hide its desire to murder us.

    • Replies: @J.Ross
  81. res says:
    @Mark G.

    Did being the son of a rich and powerful politician help or hurt Hunter Biden?

    I think the answer to that depends on whether you mean it in terms of him becoming the kind of person he is OR getting away with being that kind of person. I’d say hurt to the first and help to the second. What do you think?

    • Agree: Mark G.
  82. The Nut doesn’t fall far from the tree.

  83. “When he was seventeen, he got caught up in a drug deal gone bad, and in the altercation that ensued, he shot and killed the buyer.

    “How should we think about Smith’s level of moral responsibility? Is there some magical moment at which Smith was transformed from the victim of his circumstances to the author of his own story?”

    Everything this woman says, is a lie. Even her hypothetical examples. A “drug deal gone bad” is just a newspeak euphemism for premeditated murder and robbery. Thus, Smith was the “author” when he decided to murder and rob his victim.

    Barbara H. Fried is either a third-rate mind who combined pretentious academese (“compatibilism”) and DNC talking points (e.g., “privatization of social security”), or a second-rate mind who spent too many years surrounded by privileged, tenured academics who all think alike, and who have never debated people who disagree with them. That’s one reason why, as some commenters pointed out, her argument is self-refuting.

    In any event, you cannot engage in discourse with pathological liars, except to tell them, “You’re a liar.”

    These people’s idea of “debate”: Responding to students who disagree with them by lowering their grades and putting poison pen letters in their personal records, and to non-tenured colleagues by having them fired and Whitelisted.

    • Agree: Achmed E. Newman
    • Replies: @J.Ross
  84. Thrallman says:
    @Hernan Pizzaro del Blanco

    Fried makes an argument against the moral rationale for punishment, and pretends it’s the only rationale.

    1. Moral rationale (which can be defended)
    2. Preventative rationale. Hernan Pizzaro del Blanco wrote:

    But we don’t incarcerate criminals because we blame them for their stupidity or violence, we do it to protect ourselves from criminals.

    3. The deterrence rationale. (Fried ignores it completely.) Punishment is a disincentive to crime. When the cost of crime decreases, the supply of crime increases.
    4. The eugenic function of removing defectives. (unthinkable to Fried)

    Does she take her argument to its logical conclusion that blame is bad, turn loose the jails? Probably not. She wants fewer prisons and more crime. The upper class has contempt for the poor who are the usual victims.

  85. anon[256] • Disclaimer says:

    BOTH of his parents are Stanford law profs. This article explains why neither have shown any honor by resigning. It’s a Jew thing. They feel zero shame, they are blameless, because Holocaust, pogroms, 2000 year oppression, the alleged 6 million. So everything they do is justified. I think they call that “chutzpah”, or “shameless dishonesty” in English. Or maybe it’s now “blameless dishonesty”.

    We can be sure one of his parents will defend him or at least serve on his defense council. His dad even regularly advised him on FTX legal issues. The defense for their son will be, “it’s society’s fault. Society puts too much pressure on success.” Nothing to do with greed, and the individual has no agency. Shameless Jews is redundant. It’s also now Blameless Jews.

    • Replies: @Art Deco
  86. Art Deco says:
    @Colin Wright

    As a working model, it’s at least as realistic, humane, and practical as any. Assume your average black is a giant, sexually mature five year old, and you’ve got a perspective that should prove valid.

    It’s idiotic.

  87. J.Ross says:
    @B36

    Anything using a blockchain is completely knowable, as the blockchain records all the transactions. But there are forms of crypto which claim to not do this. Supposedly the IRS has a bounty out for anyone who can audit Monero.

  88. J.Ross says:
    @Nicholas Stix

    I don’t have the name, the link, or the excerpt, but will never forget a piece in Harper’s Readings, from an unpublished novel, by a female “genius” who became an academic and then a criminal. The “genius” woman attempted to shoot up a school but was defeated by not being able to open the doors. The novel is remarkably masturbative and repetitive. Its protagonists are academically recognized “geniuses” who talk to each other, all day, about how smart they are, how nobody understands how smart they are (but each other), and how they should rule the lesser people.
    How much of our academy is made up of mentally ill fake-brilliant supremacists like Fried and that wacko?

    • Replies: @Nicholas Stix
  89. J.Ross says:
    @That Would Be Telling

    A passage in the Hagakure exhorts the reader to kill, says that it is good to kill, and bemoans that “nowadays” men are becoming soft and finding excuses to not kill. This is a bit of a throw at first, but it actually squares roughly with ideas in Christian and Western morality. When people get soft and indulge their own vices, they find it difficult or “hypocritical” to apply just punishment to others. When people have suffered and are disciplining themselves, they are enabled to properly close their hearts to mercy. The killing the Hagakure is talking about is not wonton murder but lawful ordered hits.

  90. Anon[406] • Disclaimer says:
    @Richard B

    She knows it doesn’t make sense, but she can’t just come out and say “Jews shouldn’t be punished,” needs some plausible deniability.

  91. Anon[319] • Disclaimer says:

    This woman and her thesis is a prime example of white privilege. Imagine her salary to regurgitate old nature/nurture talking points.

  92. Art Deco says:
    @anon

    Why are they supposed to resign from their jobs at a private employer because their son committed crimes? Were they his accomplices?

  93. @J.Ross

    Thanks.

    The following passage is from the original text:

    “More importantly there are tools of social control that are directed specifically at harm reduction. The point of such tools is not to coddle criminals, or to deny their accountability or volitional capacities. It is to reduce future harm at a tolerable cost to all of us, wrongdoers included, by influencing wrongdoers’ future choices through rehabilitation, more carefully calibrated deterrence, and, when necessary, isolation from society. There are serious disagreements about whether harm-reduction policies have worked in the past, though there are no serious disagreements about the failures of mass incarceration. But we have some evidence that interventions can work if they are evidence-based and carefully tailored to the problems we are trying to fix. Since, unlike retribution, such tools are designed for the purpose of harm reduction, we should hardly be surprised if they do a better job of it.”

    “There are serious disagreements about whether harm-reduction policies have worked in the past, though there are no serious disagreements about the failures of mass incarceration.”

    Only in her world are there “no serious disagreements” about something that doesn’t even exist, except as a rhetorical strategy of her and her political allies, and as part of a plan for the final solution to the White problem.

    • Replies: @J.Ross
  94. J.Ross says:
    @Nicholas Stix

    … there are no serious disagreements about the failures of mass incarceration.

    I seriously disagree.
    —–
    I had a dream about the conversation our race needs to have with whales regarding dogs.
    “We failed. We give up. We’re out. You’re next. But these guys, let me tell you about these guys. I know they don’t look like much. But this little pupper will throw himself at an angry charging bear to give you five minutes’ head start. There’s a lot of humans who are morally inferior and less manly. The universe will judge you if you don’t do right by these guys.”

  95. J.Ross says:
    @DamDoc

    In fact an excitable boy.

  96. Bernard says:

    I remember watching that Prior clip in the theater way back when. He was a funny man.

  97. bert33 says:

    life in prison will set a warning to the others that their day of reckoning is coming and that enforcement is equal to the task

  98. Rapparee says:

    An hour listening to the average lifer in prison or the average at-risk teen talk about his or her circumstances, and most Americans would never view those groups in the same way again.

    Having spent far more than many, many hours talking to lifers and violent offenders, I can agree- you’ll come to understand at a visceral level how unbelievably manipulative, narcissistic, cruel, and megalomaniacal many (not all) maximum-security inmates are. It won’t make you a more upbeat luncheon partner.

  99. I somehow managed to not go blind reading the entire article and got to this at the end: “The next time something goes terribly wrong, suppose that instead of immediately asking who is to blame, we were to ask: How can we fix this problem? Fixing problems is costly.” Well in the case of FTX, it’s obviously who’s to blame, isn’t it, Mom?? And yes, $16 Billion is fairly “costly”. So can we fix this problem by simply throwing more money at it, or by having all the dumbocraps return the political donations? Nope, don’t think that will get back all the stolen money. Maybe we can start by making sure brain-dead idiots like you and your kind NEVER pro-create so there’s a stronger possibility your lunacy dies out after one generation. Aside from that, is anyone working on retroactive birth control?

  100. @prime noticer

    Per Dave Chapelle: it’s a coincidence!

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